Being Annoyed
© 5 Sep 2011 Luther Tychonievich
Licensed under Creative Commons: CC BY-NC-ND 3.0
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It’s all in your mind.


I recently moved buildings at school/work. The new building is very nice in many ways, but it has alarms on the doors of each of the rooms that aren’t yet well calibrated. Thus, periodically an ear-splitting tone will blare through the office or hallway for the thirty minutes that currently elapses before auto-reset. I’ve found these noises very annoying for the past week.

Today when the alarm in my workspace began its 30-second wail I surprised myself by thinking “‍Ah, there’s the alarm. I’m glad it’s not my job to fix that!‍” There was no annoyance, no cringing as my ears slowly went numb. Somehow my mind had decided that this noise was part of life and instead of being annoyed I felt sympathy for the technicians who are task with the alarms’ calibration.

In English, “‍annoy‍” is a transitive verb: X annoys Y. I don’t think it really works that way. Annoyance isn’t something that you can do to me; it’s something I can allow to exist around you as a catalyst.

There are many other things besides deafening alarms that do continue to catalyze my annoyance. I look forward to maturing past these unpleasant mental reactions.

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